Two charged in fatal Beverly Hills stabbing of Japanese filmmaker's son
Los Angeles County prosecutors charged two people with murder Thursday in connection with the fatal stabbing of the 21-year-old son of a Japanese filmmaker in Trousdale Estates.
Scott Joe Barker, 23, and Chie Alexandra Coggins Johnson, 20, both of Los Angeles, each face a single count of murder in connection with the slaying of Katsutoshi Tony Takazato, who was found dead Tuesday outside his father's estate in the 1800 block of Carla Ridge.
Barker and Johnson, who are expected to make their first court appearance Thursday in Beverly Hills, are being held in lieu of $1-million bail. If convicted, each faces up to life in prison.
A third suspect was released after Beverly Hills police detectives concluded he was not involved, said Jane Robison, spokeswoman for the Los Angeles County district attorney's office.
Johnson had a past relationship with Takazato but had recently begun dating Barker, Robison said. Authorities believe Barker became enraged after learning Takazato may have physically abused Johnson.
Barker went to the home with Johnson and stabbed Takazato multiple times, authorities said.
Since January 2007, there have been just three homicides reported in
Beverly Hills, according to a database compiled by The Times' Homicide
Report. During that span, not a single homicide had been reported within
two miles of the exclusive Trousdale neighborhood where spacious
mansions sold for up to $19 million this year.
-- Andrew Blankstein
Photo: Beverly Hills police search for suspects in the stabbing earlier this week. Credit: John W. Adkisson / Los Angeles Times